In a session with a witch, a wizard and me, a rogue with a knife and crossbow, I found my character to be astonishingly useless against swarms. There was a swarm of Hellwasps and I quite literally just hid behind the magic users. The mages were rather absurdly effective (my contribution to the session was nil), and after looking up the general mechanics for swarms, it appears you have three options:
- Area affect magic (I don't even have Minor Magic and don't plan on acquiring it)
- A torch/fire swung as an improvised weapon
- A lantern/fire source as an improvised thrown weapon
My character is a halfling who of course travels light, and I try not to carry anything that emits visible auras or significant magic auras, so I really do just have my crossbow, knife and armor for the most part. I have 4 pathfinder pouches to hide small magic items though so I'm not opposed to carrying anything that can fit in those pouches; I just don't want to be caught with a giant glowing quarterstaff; my character often has to pass as an innocent little (human) girl.
Is there any option for dealing with swarms like that? Are there items I could use or preferably tactics I could use to actually damage a swarm (or cause damage to them)? Or is running my only option when faced with a swarm when alone?